Lombok Earthquake - Photo by President Office

JAKARTA (TheInsiderStories) – Indonesian government will issue a presidential instruction on recovery and reconstruction of Lombok which was hit by a series of earthquake over the past week, the spokesman of Disaster Mitigation Agency Sutopo Purwo Nugroho said on Tuesday (21/08).

The presidential instruction will allow ministries or other relevant government institutions to allocate or receive additional funding from the State budget for recovery efforts in Lombok, he added. The policy is also required to meet the funding gap for recovery and reconstruction plans due to limited capacities of the local government.

“The ministry and government agency can asked more budget for the needs of the disaster management to parliament, the presidential instruction will act as a legal umbrella,” Nugroho said.

He reported, at least 513 people died in the earthquakes and 7,145 people injured, while thousands of people were displaced. The earthquake also destroyed or damaged 73,843 houses, 798 units of public facilities and numerous others of physical structures.

The agency estimated that the economic loss from the earthquake at around Rp7.7 trillion (US$531.04 million). He also supported the government’s decision to not declare the Lombok earthquake as a national disaster, saying the West Nusa Tenggara provincial administration is still functioning and able to take control of the recovery and reconstruction efforts.

There are at least five preconditions for a disaster to be labeled as a national disaster, namely numbers of victims, material losses, public facility’s damages, the vastness of the areas impacted by the disasters, and the social economy impacts

“But the most important thing of the conditions is the existence and the functioning of local government, so far West Nusa Tenggara governor said that local government still has the capability to handle the disaster,” he added.

TIS Intelligence Team, Email: theinsiderstories@gmail.com